Every day, newspapers and news channels around the country bear unfortunate news of accidental fractures or deaths. Buses, vans, cars, bikes, rickshaws, trucks etc. are all involved in daily unnatural accidents at some point. Thousands of lives are gone, in an untimely way, on an annual basis. The number of these accidents continue to increase rather than be reduced. Careless drivers and a little need for some adrenaline are some of the contributing factors which make up for most of road accidents.
For the past many years or so, no one serious for implementation of traffic laws in the country. Here, a person can even get away with taking another’s, life let alone be held accountable for an accident. During the Pervaiz Elahi government in Punjab Pakistan, the traffic police was reformed, which turned out to be successful to some extent. Excepting that, no other government prioritized the need to educate the masses about road sense and make efforts to curb road accidents.
The government may even decide to create special courts only to deal with road side safety matters. The bikers racing around on the road should also be caught and reprimanded without any leniency. It isn’t a matter of the government being hard or soft. The lives of these people are and remain at stake.
Road accidents are not uncommon around the world. Every country has alarming number of deaths due to accidents. However, most of the developed world does indeed make an effort to curb them. Laws are in place which are effectively implemented rooting out a large number of accidents which otherwise would most certainly have taken place.
Pakistan, on the other hand, is far behind in solving this problem. Or, at least, making efforts to do so. Let us first understand what causes most of these accidents before embarking to find a solution. A significant number of road side accidents involve under-age drivers and bike riders. These young individuals do not even possess a valid license allowing them to drive a car or ride a bike.
Just this past week, a young teenager’s life was cut short in an accident in the Defense area of Lahore Pakistan. Along with the ill-fated teenager, an entire family on a motorcycle almost departed to meet the Creator. Parents of these children are the ones to blame for firstly, allowing them to drive without being of age and secondly, not taking any extra precautions to avoid the children from over-speeding, or participating in racing on the streets.
From a teenager’s perspective, the extra speed is the source of adrenaline rush which seems to be worth it. But they are not in a position to comprehend the consequences of a single miscalculation. It is the adults’ job to steer their children in the right direction. Flaunting newly made money by allowing teenaged children to drive around in big cars maybe a source of contentment for some, but when it comes at the cost of their own child’s life, it most certainly isn’t worth it. What use would the wealth be, if the ones you earn it for are not going to be there to use it? Allowing under-aged children to drive should be a strictly no. Drivers, who can’t be trusted in not allowing the children at the wheel, should not be sent away with them alone. These steps may seem impractical to some, but are essential for a safer environment for their own children.
Second come the bike riders who are racing around corners and trying to catch the smallest spot in sight. A vast majority of bike riders are impatient and pay no heed to traffic light poles, laws and road side safety precautions. It was only pursuant to strict orders passed by the Lahore High Court which prompted the people in Lahore to use helmets, otherwise the latter are missing from most bike riders heads. In utter disregard of the traffic norms, bike riders slide around cars in a bid to get to the front, occasionally running traffic lights while they are at it. Excepting a handful, most of the bikes do not even have side mirrors to allow them to look around before making a turn. Even kids, younger than teenage years, are also seen riding around on motorcycles, often carrying elders of their families behind. These elders fail to anticipate any untoward incident which may occur due to a child riding the motorcycle.
Ideally, the bike riders themselves would be educated enough to know and comprehend the implications of their actions. However, within the current setting, that doesn’t appear plausible enough. It falls back upon the state to implement traffic laws ferociously, not with AN intention to gather cash from fines, however to save lots of the lives of the overall public. The seat-belt initiative has set the wheel in motion and fortunately, most of the drivers currently abide by the rule. Yet, multitudinous measures have to be compelled to be taken. Amending the prevailing laws and introducing unconscionable fines would be a starter. a motorcycle rider while not a helmet or aspect mirrors being penalized a big amount, for example, would so teach the wrongdoer a lesson, the type any penal law intends to show.
An under-age driver should be arrested at the spot, along with the adult allowing him to drive, with the latter being charged for endangering the lives of the child as well as the public at large. Over-speeding should also entail penal consequences rather than fine. Such minimal fines are not going to create any difference and the same need to be revised to an amount which pinches most.
Driving without a valid license should be punishable with imprisonment. Parents allowing their children to drive without one should be tried for such actions.
With similar measures as the aforesaid, Pakistan can effectively reduce a large number of deaths which are caused due to road accidents. If not for anyone else, then for their own children parents should adopt a stricter approach and not allow then to take the wheel.